And Your Self Worth is……

Ma·te·ri·al·ism: a tendency to consider material possessions and physical comfort as more important than spiritual values. – Oxford Dictionary

Let’s talk about self-worth. What determines it? Is it the amount of money you make? The size of your house? The location? Or could it be the type of car you drive? What about the clothes and accessories you wear? How do you calculate your self-worth?

More money, more problems! I have come to find this statement very true. The more money we make, the more we spend, the more taxes we have to pay, the more troubles come our way. In fact, according to the HuffPost, “Once our basic needs are met, wealth makes very little difference to one’s overall well-being and happiness. And in fact, extremely wealthy people actually suffer from higher rates of depression.” More money can be both good and bad, but ultimately how much you make shouldn’t determine how you feel about yourself.

What you drive and what you wear are also meaningless. Wearing a $200 pair of name-brand shoes doesn’t mean you’re wealthy. It just means that you spent $200 on a pair of shoes that cost less than $20 to make. And as far as an expensive car, the value of the car diminishes the minute you drive it off the lot. So, these things don’t really say much about self-worth either.

Where you live is no better an indicator for self-worth. I partly understand the idea of making enough money to move into the suburbs. I say partly because on one hand we all deserve better. We all want to live in an area that makes us feel safe and secure. We all want a better education for our children and nice neighbors. Sounds like the life, but on the other hand its all just a facade. Just watch this video which explains why:

*AdamsKnowsBest*-Suburbs

The fabled “Suburbs” are just that; a fable. The property lines are a front and the mortar between the bricks is racism, but many of us run from our communities to help these communities prosper. There’s nothing wrong with staying in the Black Community and revamping it. Think of it as an opportunity to build better because while what you can buy may not be an indicator of self-worth, what you can build is a start.

Now I’m not here to tell you what to do with your money. That’s not my place. I’m just asking what determines your self-worth? Most of us put more into making our appearance stand out than we put into making our mentality stand out. At the end of the day, what’s the point of trying to appeal to a bunch of people we don’t know or care anything about? It’s not like other people determine our self-worth… Do they?

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Family Wealth in the Black Community

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Why is the establishment of family wealth always overlooked in the black community? Many of us strive to provide for our children while we’re here, but forget that we can also provide for our children when we’re gone. Meaning money wise, we can leave our loved ones financially set for their future. Not only am I speaking of the importance of life insurance, but also financial and non financial assets. These three resources help to insure that your family can establish financial stability once you’ve passed.

Life insurance isn’t something that you should want to push to the side. No one’s time on this earth is guaranteed, so we shouldn’t procrastinate on providing for our loved ones in the event of our death. As stated by Black Enterprise, “life insurance can help blacks create multi-generational wealth, keep assets like homes and businesses, and amplify their nest egg for retirement to name a few benefits.” It’s already hard to lose a loved one. Financial burdens shouldn’t be a part of the healing process. Not only can life insurance aid in your family’s wealth, but it could also benefit the community. Community outreach efforts such as charities, churches, and youth programs could benefit from your insurance.

Financial assets, in my opinion, are the second key to establishing financial wealth. Assets like bank accounts, stocks, and bonds can be of great use to your loved ones after you pass. In order to properly utilize these three resources, you first have to educate your self about money and the stock market. Dr. Boyce Watkins created a great program called The Black Stock Market Program, just in case your interested. Invest in yourself.

Another important aspect in the establishment of family wealth is non-financial assets. The difference between financial and non-financial assets is that one you can physically see (non-financial) and touch and the other is usually presented on a piece of paper (financial). Non-financial assets usually refer to real estate, cars, businesses, equipment, gold, etc. Having non-financial assets allows your loved ones to keep some of your items for their own usage, or sell off your items for financial gain. Either way they can help your family accumulate wealth.

Now I’m no financial coach and I possess no degrees in business. I’m simply passing on some of the tips that I’ve learned about establishing family wealth. I encourage you to dig a little deeper and gain the knowledge you need to achieve financial stability because financial stability and family wealth give your loved ones a leg to stand on in the black community.

Love and peace family….

Let’s Talk About Color-ism…

 

ColorismColor-ism: prejudice or discrimination against individuals with a dark skin tone, typically among people of the same ethnic or racial group.

This word has been coming up a lot lately, but many Black people hate to admit that it exist. As if dark skinned Black women could make up the discrimination they face, the disgusting things that are said about/to them, and let’s not forget the feeling that you’re not good enough. Those are just some of the obstacles dark skinned women and men face when combating color-ism. I’m so tired of hearing “But we’re all Black”. Well, we don’t act like it.

I’m pretty sure that you’ve all heard, or read, about the Hazel E situation and how she shamed dark skinned women. Well she said:Screenshot_2017-10-19-21-42-42

Yea, stupid right? What’s up with these celebrities and their disdain for darker women? Society already places lighter skinned people up on a pedestal and yet these celebrities still have the audacity to attack dark skinned women? Why must a person’s skin tone be brought up during a disagreement or argument? This reminds me of when Tiffany “New York” Pollard went off on Laura Govan for bringing up skin color when there was no need. Like New York said “If you are black then why bring it up?”.

Attention should also be cast on Black men in Hollywood. You know, the ones who start off with a dark skinned woman then start going lighter and lighter until they’re with a white women. Then the next thing you know they’ve become the black man disrespecting black women, mostly darker women, on social media. Must I again mention Tyrese, Kodak Black, and Gilbert Arenas? It’s just funny how lighter skin is considered an upgrade.

hair-color-chart-for-fair-and-black-skin-tone

If we as black people are going to work together, we must first address the color-ism that exist between us. No one should be deemed better than anyone else based on their skin tone. This is no different from what White people did to Black people and are still doing til this day. All black is beautiful. Why let something as small as the pigment of your skin separate us?

This is a conversation that must be had amongst our people. Til next time…

Love and Peace

Talking “White” & Listening to “White Music”

“Why you talk white?” “Why you listen to white people music?” Two questions I was always asked as a child. I never knew how to answer so I started to incorporate things into my life that I thought would make me seem more “Black”. I changed the music I listened to. I changed the way I spoke. But when I started to think about it, both statements were dumb.

Growing up in America, the native language is English. You’re taught it the moment you start talking. Recently the school systems have started to teach Spanish as a second language and Chinese as a third, but English is still number one. So weren’t we all taught to “talk white”? English is a Germanic language with heavy Latin influences. Last I checked those were European languages. We all “talk white” and yet, for many of us, we don’t sound like white people.

What Blacks have done unknowingly is create their own dialect. We take words, and sometimes create words, and add our own unique meaning to them. For example, the word fleek which means extremely good, attractive, or stylish, according to Google. This word was created by a black person and caught on very quickly.  Its the story of many words, and terms, that are used in the black community. Black people are slowly creating a new language.

Now about white music; it’s not a thing. Pay attention to the beat of some of these “white songs”. Sounds familiar right. That’s because almost all American music outside of the foxtrot was either derived from or influenced by “Black music”. Most “white music”, especially pop music, is just white people singing over R&B or Hip-hop beats. For example, Christina Aguilera “Gene in a Bottle” (my all-time favorite; don’t judge me), all of NSYNC’s music, the majority of Pink’s catalog; the list goes on. You’re basically listening to “Black music” whenever you listen to music in general.

With living in this country, you’re either going to assimilate or go against the grain. Regardless of what you decide to do, if you were born black, you will forever be black no matter what your English sounds like. So let’s recap: The English language was, and still is forced on anyone who isn’t white, and there’s really no such thing as “white music”, except for techno and heavy metal. Y’all can have that. But rock, pop, and yes even country, are still Black music.

 

The Road to Success?

extSuc.cess: The accomplishment of an aim or purpose/The act of getting or achieving wealth, respect, or fame

Such a simple word it seems. One doesn’t know how complicated attaining success is until attempting to grasp a hold to its slippery hands. Depending on your background, gaining success can be a challenge or a breeze. We all want it, but for many it will forever be a dream in the night.

I was always told “Go to college and you’ll be successful.” College is a great path to success, but its only one of many. College is just “a path”; it’s not “the path”. If you’re going to college on hopes to come out making six figures, you’re setting yourself up for a disappointment. As charted by The Alantic, African Americans with Bachelor degrees or higher have a 4.1% unemployment rate while whites with the same degree have a 2.4% unemployment rate. 5.3% is the National Unemployment Rate among all Americans. Now hopefully these numbers have changed because this article was written in December 2015. And this is not to discourage you or to sway you away from a higher education because education is a tool for success; I just advise you to have a more long term plan. I’m seeing way too many people who possess college degrees, but are working minimum wage jobs. I’m pretty sure that wasn’t their plan. Many of my peers speak about how the student loans are eating away at them. My husband, for example has to relinquish $353 a month to his student loans! To some, that might not sound like much. But believe me when I say we feel that pain each month. Especially since we just got married this year and went on a honeymoon. Not to mention we have a one income household. As stated by Student Loan Hero, Americans have $1.45 trillion in student loan debt. Americans also have a student loan delinquency rate of 11.2%. If you ask me, its all just a money making scheme. All of this money just to get a degree and work for someone else’s company?

The good thing is that many African Americans are opting to become their own boss and start their own businesses. As stated by Atlanta Black Star, 3.3% out of 12% of African Americans own businesses that are less than two years old. Now I know that number isn’t high, but hopefully we’ll see an increase. And in order for us to see these businesses flourish, we have to give them the support of the black community. Yeah their prices are a little high, but that stock doesn’t come cheap for them and they don’t have as many customers as the other businesses. Be sure to visit the page regularly. I’m going to start posting lists of black owned businesses while visiting some and giving my review.

So my goal today is to get as many people as I can to build up a more long term plan when attending college. Beware of those student loans. There are many affordable ways to achieve higher education, such as Community College. You can always complete your prerequisites and transfer, saving yourself thousands. I will also post some sites to help you on your journey.

 

Free Application for Federal Student Aid- https://fafsa.ed.gov/

Access to thousands of Scholarships- https://www.scholarships.com/

4 Tips for African Americans choosing a collegehttp://time.com/money/4284350/tips-african-american-students-choosing-college/#ampshare=http://time.com/money/4284350/tips-african-american-students-choosing-college/

10 Great Saving Tips while in College- https://hbculifestyle.com/saving-tips-for-college/

P.S: For those of you who have Section 8 or who’s parents have Section 8, and you’re on their lease, speak to your Representative, or the one who handles your case, about College Financial Assistance. Section 8 helps pay for Community College.

 

 

The criticizing of Black Women has got to stop!

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Why are black women so heavily criticized, especially by other black people? We put celebrities so high up on a pedestal that we sometimes forget they’re human. As human beings, we’re going to make mistakes; we are going to do things that are fun for us (you), but may seem distasteful to the next person. Why do we expect celebrities to be “holier than thou” when they’re just human. For instance, the #FortheDchallange that has gone viral in the last few weeks. How is what these celebrities partake in anybody’s business? How are the things that they would do for the D effecting our lives?  So much judgement was passed on Regina Hall, Issa Rae, Sanaa Lathan, Erykah Badu, and so many other famous black celebrities. Aren’t sistas judged enough?


Black women just can’t catch a break. But what’s even more disappointing is that our biggest critics are black men. Think about Tyrese who dissed black women for wearing weave and make-up. I will never understand why a man cares so much about what’s on a woman’s body. Or what about Kodak Black saying he’s not into dark skinned women. I guess that’s your preference but you’re dark skinned yourself. Oh and lets not forget Gilbert Arenas who felt the need to voice his opinion and say “Lupita Nyong’o ain’t that cute”. Well neither are you! I’m so tired of the mega dissing against us Black Queens.

Let’s just take a step back and give black women the praise for what they HAVE done. Black women are some of the strongest women out here. Even with being put down by outsiders and our own people, we still manage to stand tall and continue to rise. These celebrities have made it through some of the toughest trials Black women can face to get to where they are today Them participating in a “vine” should not discredit them from all of their achievements. Just live and let others live. If you wear weave, flaunt it! If you wear make-up, flaunt it! If you’re natural, flaunt it! If you wanna talk about your love for Dick, speak! Life is way too short to remain serious all of the time. Live for you and not for anyone else!